The Independent National Electoral Commission has threatened to cancel election results in some parts of Kogi State due to election violence.
The Resident Electoral Commissioner in the state, Hale Longpet, made the warning while reacting to the crises that erupted in some Local Government Areas.
Recall that there were reports of outbreaks of violence in some polling units in Anyigba and Dekina in the Kogi East and Mopa in the Kogi West as well as parts of Kogi Central, where voting materials were allegedly carted away by the thugs.
Reacting to the issues, the REC said, “You know the electoral Law says that where there are disruptions to the process, the result will be cancelled, the very particular units’ results will be cancelled. The issues initially were only in the Kogi East and Central but I can’t tell exactly where and where in the state have been affected until the results are brought by the electoral officers.
“We understood that because of the violence, those affected areas couldn’t conclude election there. I’m shocked that people can go to that level and disrupt something that everybody should have enjoyed.”
Speaking further, the commissioner who decried the loss of lives also praised the peaceful conduct of the elections in some areas.
“Election is a peaceful and willful thing that people are offered to freely participate. Again, If people are given assurance that everyone will enjoy a pleasant experience, why then should we have thugs invading the whole town or the local government, disrupting the conduct of the elections?” he asked.
Mr. Longpet added, “This is very sad and shocking when you look at the loss of lives involved.”
He explained that “election is not war so If you were standing in for election to provide services for your people, you don’t need to engage in these destructive activities.”
According to him, people who have an interest to bring good things to their communities do go out to positively engage and vote or exercise their franchise and they should not be stopped or denied the opportunity.”